Welcome to the Australian Bush Poets Association

ABPA Logo

WELCOME. Membership of the Australian Bush Poets Association (ABPA) is comprised of writers, performers and individuals who are interested in bush poetry and enjoy written and live stories in rhyme and metre. If you have an interest in this piece of Australian culture called bush poetry, you have come to the right place.

Aims
The objectives of the Australian Bush Poets Association are to foster and encourage the growth of bush poetry in Australia. By definition, Australian bush poetry is metred and rhymed poetry about Australia, Australians and/or the Australian way of life.

Membership
To join the Australian Bush Poets Association and receive our bi-monthly magazine, go to our Membership page.

The ABPA keeps in touch with its members through this website (and forum) and our bi-monthly magazine of bush poetry news, events, results of written and performance competitions as well as samples of contemporary bush poetry. Many members have books, CDs and other products. These can be advertised in the magazine. For rates, click here. The deadline for ads and other content for the magazine is the 22nd of the month preceding publication. Magazines are published at the beginning of February, April, June, August, October and December.

ABPA Facebook page Check out our Facebook page.

Hervey Bay Bush Poets Blossoming

Bay Bush Poets

The Bay Bush Poets have hit the ground running with lots of fantastic poetry, yarn spinning and words from our own resident Banjo Paterson expert. He even has an original, hand written open verse poem by Banjo, A B Paterson, of his own!

The morning was even more exciting with Bill and Meg Gordon from WA sharing their own and other writers work.

Jan Facey was fabulous as she always is. Jan stayed on to share writing and performing tips with new, inexperienced Poets as well as sharing her own rivetting, sometimes hilarious poems. After some considerable persuasion Jan shared the fact that she had won the “Bronze swagman” poetry competition and many other bush poetry milestones. Even with her health issues Jan was keen to help as well as perform. She said that she was very impressed by the group and the fact that so many write their own poetry.

One of the attendees is a ridgey-didge retired stockman who spent most of his life working out West of Bourke as a ringer. His stories are fabulous. Another of the group is a horsewoman who tutors riders and writes heartfelt poetry about this and other experiences.

The group is very fortunate to have 5 poetry lovers that want to attend so that they can hear the poetry but not perform it. This is beaut because many groups are caught up in performing bush poetry exclusively to bush poets.

There was a certain inexplicable feeling of “I’ve found my tribe” which was expressed by almost all of those who attended. It seems that the Bay Bush Poets are bound for success and that they are yet another new group in Queensland. Bush poetry is far from dead – it is alive and thriving! The group will meet again at the Hervey Bay library on the 22nd of June, 9.15 am, all are welcome. For more information please call Mick Martin 042 15 14 555 or email .

2024 Tenterfield Oracles of the Bush Festival

Oracles of the Bush

The Yellow Shirt volunteers and professional performers close the Tenterfield Oracles of the Bush event.

Oracles of the Bush

Newly-awarded Lifetime ABPA member, Marion Fitrzgerald, encouraged students to perform at the Oracles competitions through workshops at schools prior to the big event.

A bittersweet Tenterfield Oracles Of The Bush 2024. Sell-out crowds and their biggest ever lineup, was soured by the fact that after twenty seven years, they were pulling up stumps.
A remarkable run by a purely boutique Bush Poetry Festival, and leaving behind a wonderful lineup of past winners of the Looming Legends Performance Competition as well as a Who’s Who of local inductees into the Oracles Legends Hall Of Fame.
Sadly, weather came to thwart the weekend and the traditional opening, the Bush Poets Breakfast, was moved from Bruxner Park to the Showground Pavilion, as was the Friday Night Campfire Yarns and the Sunday Breakfast in the Park. All other events went ahead as scheduled.
The Bush Poetry fraternity and the town of Tenterfield should be extremely proud of what they have achieved for Bush Poetry in those twenty seven years, and the Oracles were the first Bush Poetry Festival to reemerge after the Covid days and put Poets back on the stage after a couple of years absence. And all through the tireless work of the Yellow Shirts, Tenterfield’s Volunteer Brigade!

Oracles of the Bush

The work put in by this group over the years has been phenomenal and to have events in Paul Petrie’s barn (pictured above) once more, took the memories back a long way.

Oracles of the Bush

With the Bush Poetry Troupe of (l to r) Bill Kearns, myself, Melanie Hall, Marco Gliori, Susan Carcary, Gary Fogarty, Kylie Castle (muso), Greg North and Ray Essery, it was great to see sold-out concerts, lunches and breakfasts.
It started with the Welcome Dinner at the Transport Museum on the Thursday Night. Friday saw the Lion’s Club Brekkie, the Children’s Concert and Competition then the first heats of the Looming Legends competition and campfire yarns.
Saturday had Poets Breakfasts at the Tenterfield Golf Club, The Tenterfield Motor Inn and at Paul Petrie’s Barn, all sell outs. Lunch shows were full at Paul’s Barn, Arajay Downs, the Ivy Chapel and the Tenterfield Transport Museum. Next up was the second heats of the Looming Legends and then the major event, The Saturday Night Poet’s Concert, a night or laughter, tears, reminiscing and catching up.
Sunday Morning Poetry In The Park was again moved indoors and for the last time, the Walk-Up Poets battled it out in the One Minute Cup, fighting for this year’s Trophy, a metal rain gauge (which was handmade and donated by Paul Petrie). The winner was 92-year-old Melba Austin who wrote her poem on toilet paper!

Oracles of the Bush

Winner of the Looming Legends 2024 Competition of Oracles of the Bush, Lara Flanagan, pictured with 2015 Legend Perry Condrick.

The Looming Legends Competition was one of the most closely fought yet, but it was the Ladies triumphing, with local, Lara Flanagan, taking out both sections. She defeated Claire Reynolds in the Previously Published Section and Debby Berryman in the Original Section. Debby Berryman also took out the Audience Award for most popular performance of the Oracles with here rendition of Milton Taylor’s ‘The Saga Of Cecil’.
So sadly, another era comes to a close, but the memories left behind by the Oracles of the Bush, has forever put Tenterfield into the heart of Australian Bush Poetry.
Macpoet (Neil McArthur).

See full results here.

Victorian State Championships at The Man From Snowy River Festival

Corryong Mural
Victorian Champions

The winners: Lynne Frederick (Matilda Award) and Seamus Foley (Clancy Award).

Poets on Parade

Poets on parade.

The Man From Snowy River Bush Festival in Corryong, Victoria, once again hosted the Victorian State Championships of Bush Poetry.

See full results here.

Past Magazines now online

The historic magazines of the ABPA from its inception in 1994 are now available here. See how we used to look!



See previously featured poets.

See previously featured achievers.